Insubordination and refusing to sign a warning

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Posts: 22
Joined: 17 Jan 2011, 16:41

Insubordination and refusing to sign a warning

Unread post by vanita » 03 Mar 2011, 15:50

Good Day :-)
I have a very sticky situation with one of my factory team leaders.......
She is the top performer and has always had a good relationship with the factory manager, but last week he asked her (via one of the other supervisors) to please assist with a relevant and work related task and she refused to carry out this order. She claims that she never knew that the request was coming from the production manager, but thought that it was just the supervisor requiring the assitance.
The production manager later on went up to her, and infront of everyone showed his dissatisfaction with her behaviour by saying that he was really disappointed in her and 'who does she think she is' saying that teh equipment is HER equipment etc etc and she retaliated by cheeking him back. They raised their voices at each other and then he got so irritated that he stormed off. Obviously she was highly embarassed and is quite fiesty too, so she started crying and performing etc.
He later admitted that he was wrong, but we both felt that she should get a warning (not even for direspecting him and insubordination) but for failing to carry out a reasonable and lawful instruction given to her by the dayshift supervisor.
We agreed on this, and drew up the warning letter, called her in and she BLATANTLY refused to sign it. She wouldn't even sign that she had received teh warning, let alone agree to it. What can we do now? surely there is something that we can do??
We don't want her going around and spreading a rumour that if you don't agree with a warning or don't think it's fair that you can just refuse to sign it and everything will be hunky dory???? It is unacceptable...
Please help :roll:

Posts: 223
Joined: 21 Jan 2011, 15:19

Re: Insubordination and refusing to sign a warning

Unread post by Xanman » 03 Mar 2011, 16:08

The Company has the right to enforce disciplinary action on an employee in line with their disciplinary policy and procedures. before issuing the warning you would want to investigate the way/manner in which the supervisor "conveyed the message" as it seems that the dispute arose during this communication. You will have to look at your reporting structure as well.

Aside from the above, this is still a supervisor in a role of authority which means that the still has to respect it and therefore was wrong to refusing to obey this instruction.

Regarding the warning, the employee may refuse to sign this, however, you will have to get a witness who is present when you issue the warning. Explain to all parties present what happened and the reason the witness is there. Note on the warning that the employee refused to sign and let the witness sign on her behalf. Then give her a copy. This warning is still valid, whether or not the employee refuses or not. If she truly has a problem with the warning, she can follow the grievance procedure, and it might get escalated to a formal inquiry with a neutral Chairperson.

Posts: 22
Joined: 17 Jan 2011, 16:41

Re: Insubordination and refusing to sign a warning

Unread post by vanita » 03 Mar 2011, 16:47

Thank you Xanman
I thought the response might be along those lines, but just wanted to confirm it.
I will keep you informed.
Thank you :-)

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